Croatian operator of electricity distribution system HEP ODS presented the results achieved in the implementation of the Smart Grid Pilot Project in the distribution area of Elektra Zagreb, in which about 12 million euros is invested.
As part of the pilot project, HEP ODS invests in three functional areas of smart grids: advanced metering infrastructure, development and optimization of the conventional network and automation of the medium voltage network in five (Elektroslavonija Osijek, Elektra Zagreb, Elektrodalmacija Split, Elektra Zadar and Elektrojug Dubrovnik) distribution areas of HEP ODS.
Project Manager Kresimir Ugarkovic said that, through these project activities, HEP ODS increases the efficiency of electricity distribution, reduces electricity losses and increases the reliability of electricity supply to end users of the network. The second project activity – optimization and development of the conventional network, which includes the replacement of 449 transformers with new efficient transformers, has been completed. Also, HEP ODS has installed more than 14,000 smart meters.
This is the first HEP ODS project co-financed by a grant from the European Union, and of 23.5 million euros, which is the total value of the project, as much as 20 million euros, or 85 %, are grants from the European Regional Development Fund. As part of the project, around 12 million euros is being invested in smart grids in the area of Elektra Zagreb, which includes equipment and necessary works. Through the project, the company will achieve significant savings, because, for example, only 1 % of losses in the distribution area of Elektra Zagreb is equal to the consumption of 7,500 households.
Electricity losses in the distribution network in 2021 amounted to 1,212 GWh, or 7.2 % of net taken over electricity, which amounted to 16,877 GWh. The absolute and relative amount of losses in the distribution network are the lowest in the last ten years. The ten-year investment plan in the distribution network amounts to around 1.65 billion euros. This plan takes into account the obligations and strategic commitment of Croatia regarding the incorporation of renewable energy sources, with an emphasis on measures to reduce losses in the electricity distribution network.